Insights from Officials, Experts on President Tokayev’s Speech for Mass Media Workers’ Day

ASTANA – Experts and government officials expressed their views on President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev’s speech during a ceremony ahead of Mass Media Workers’ Day.

State Counsellor Erlan Karin. Photo credit: Akorda

State Counsellor Erlan Karin highlighted that the key point in Tokayev’s speech was that Kazakhstan has long been living in a new political reality.

“Over the past five years, our country has undergone fundamental and, in fact, irreversible changes. Thanks to the institutional reforms carried out in Kazakhstan, a new balanced system of power has been formed, within the framework of which the influence of Parliament has been significantly strengthened, the responsibility of the government has increased, and a Constitutional Court has been established,” wrote Karin on his Telegram channel.

According to Karin, the new political reality, which embraces diverse opinions and free debate, significantly contributes to the advancement of dialogue, democracy, and constructivism.

“An important and vivid indicator of the changes that have taken place in Kazakhstan is the real pluralism of opinions. Freedom of speech is taken for granted and has become an integral part of public life. And in many respects, this has become possible thanks to the realization of the universal presidential principle of ‘different opinions – one nation,’” said Karin.

Recently, President Tokayev signed a law on mass media to enhance protections and expand rights for journalists in Kazakhstan. The updated legislation introduced the concept of a “special status of a journalist,” which provides additional legal guarantees and protections for journalists.

Kazakh Minister of Culture and Information Aida Balayeva. Photo credit:

Kazakh Minister of Culture and Information Aida Balayeva congratulated journalists on Facebook, highlighting their role as a bridge connecting the state and society. She emphasized that the media, at its best, explains the essence and ultimate goal of the transformations implemented in Kazakhstan.

“In just a few years, society and the state have become completely different. Today, we live in a completely different system of values oriented towards democracy and development,” she said.

“Large-scale transformations initiated by the Head of State are key to successfully building a Just Kazakhstan – a democratic and economically powerful state. This is a state that systemically prioritizes the principle of law and order, justice and equality for all citizens, a society with a high level of internal culture, where citizens feel safe, have access to quality education, health care, and meet their material, spiritual and social needs,” she added.  

Political analyst Marat Shibutov told news agency that the power shift will no longer create conditions that allow the government and businesses to align improperly.

Political analyst Marat Shibutov. Photo credit:

“There will no longer be a ‘glass ceiling’ for ordinary people, above which they cannot rise and can only watch helplessly as the same list of people with their teams move from one leadership position to another. With succession, the government’s responsibility to the people will increase, and the likelihood of business and government merging will diminish. Top officials simply will not have time to turn into oligarchs; they will remain civil servants,” he said.

Press freedom is a major indicator of change in any democratic society, according to him.

“Not only has there been an increase in the openness of government agencies, but the media and bloggers have become much more influential and free in their topics,” said Shibutov.

“Of course, not everyone has understood this yet; not everyone has realized it. But a country of 20 million people has its own political inertia, which can last for years. It takes time and effort for everyone to change to the new rules of the game. But in general, the country is heading in the right direction – you can’t manage the same way now as you did 20 years ago,” he added.

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